Colin Shields to get Giants testimonial match

Colin Shields has played more than 500 matches for the Belfast Giants
Colin Shields has played more than 500 matches for the Belfast Giants

The Belfast Giants have awarded a testimonial game to long-serving forward Colin Shields.

The match will be played at the SSE Arena in Belfast on Tuesday, 21 November 2017 and will see the Giants play a Colin Shields All Star select.

Glaswegian Shields, 37, first signed for the Giants in 2005 but had brief spells with Sheffield Steelers and the now defunct Newcastle Vipers.

The Great Britain international is Belfast's all-time leading goal scorer.

He has netted 208 goals in 517 games for the Giants.

Shields was selected 195th overall in the 2000 NHL draft by the Philadelphia Flyers and the Team GB regular has won two Elite League titles, the Challenge Cup and Play-offs with Belfast.

Last season Shields was named by the Elite League as the Best British Player thanks to 29 goals and 27 assists in 67 games played.

"Colin has played a part of some of the most famous moments in Giants history, including the 2010 Playoff championship as well as the Elite League titles in 2006 and 2014," said Steve Thornton, Head of Hockey Operations at the Belfast Giants.

Meanwhile the Giants have moved up 10 places from last year in the International Ice Hockey Federation's (IIHF) annual attendance study of European league ice hockey.

The Giants' average home gate was 4603 this season and they have now moved up to 70th in Europe, joining two other Elite League teams, the Nottingham Panthers (38th) and Sheffield Steelers (64th), in the top 100 of home gates for European clubs.

The Elite League (uk) has also moved up to the seventh best attended league in Europe, overtaking the Austrian EBEL.